I am the Tortoise
I did it. I ran my very first half marathon. I completed the Oregon Wine Country Half Marathon.
I ran this race with my cousin, whom I have talked about before. I need to say that she is one amazing lady. A few months ago she injured her rib, and the day before the race she re-injured it. Which means she ran the whole race with a bruised rib and in a whole world of pain. She needs some serious recognition folks.
Before the race I made some motivational tattoos for my cousin and me to wear.
I get it now. I get why people run marathons and more than once. I am hooked. I know I have said I’m hooked on races, but I am now hooked on the long run.
I loved doing the race, I felt really great while running, and I felt really great after the run. While waiting for my cousin at the end, I thought ‘hell, I could’ve done a whole marathon right now!’ That was of course inaccurate, but I still felt great after. Not what I was expecting.
The race started at 7:00 a.m. and was a point to point race. Which means the starting point is different from the end point. So you park at the end point (where the wine festival will be) and take a bus to the starting point. The last bus left at 6:20, so we had to get up, make sure to eat something and drink some coffee and be at the bus location super early. I think we woke up at 4:30 a.m.
Here are my times from the Map My Run app. I started the app before crossing the start line, which is when I started running. So while running it would tell me I got to mile one, prior to the sign during the race.
|DISTANCE (miles)||PACE (min/mile)||ELAPSED TIME (min)|
*The actual distance of the race was 13.2 miles, but I forgot to turn off the app after I crossed the finish line, so it kept recording my pace and distance.
The route was beautiful and peaceful. The weather was wonderful, cool and sunny with a slight breeze.
I averaged about a 12:30-12:40 min/mile. This is slower than I would have like to have run the race, but this slow pace meant I could keep moving the whole time. The race had a hydration station every two miles. I would run until I got there, and then fill up my water bottle, and run again. Sometime during mile six I had to have a snack, because you are burning more than 1,000 calories with this distance. I walked while eating my peanut butter Gu, which surprisingly tasted just like peanut butter, then ran again.
I was passed by people, I would pass people, sometimes we would go back and forth. There was a guy about 30-40 years my senior who passed me at the beginning of the race, he was power walking, and I never saw him again. I NEVER caught up to the guy who was walking faster than I was running….
But that’s ok. I am alright with that.
At the mile 8 hydration station they had a wine tasting.
The worst part of the race was miles 10-12. We had to run on a gravel road, and there was a steep hill somewhere in mile 11. I would run and the gravel would slip under my feet, causing me to use more energy with every foot fall, and this tired me out. I ended up having to walk up half that hill, which was the only hill I walked.
I really didn’t think I would be able to run up all those hills. I tried to stay on the center line of the road and just look down. When you are looking down, the road is flat.
After the gravel ended I started running again, but that last mile I did have to walk some. Maybe half or so, but not all at once, I would walk a few steps and run a few steps. There was also a hill at the end, but it wasn’t as steep as some of them, so I looked down and powered on.
Here is one great thing about this race; your name is on your bib.
So when you are reaching the finish line and running by all the spectators, you know what happens?
They all cheer your name!
Which is both weird and motivating. They are cheering you on, you only have a few feet to go, and you dig down and push. Then there is a nice lady at the end that says great job and hands you a medal. You then get some snacks, a keepsake wine glass, and a wrist band to fill the wine glass up.
I am little disappointed in the race shirts and the wine glass they give you. The shirt is plain, and the wine glass does not say anything about “Oregon Wine Country Half” or the date or anything like that. (you know I’m gonna fix that with my Silhouette, right?) But, I am really happy about my time.
OK, so I would like to improve on my time for my races next year, but this was my first one, so I am still proud of it. This just means I need to start speed training.
I can’t even tell you how great if felt while running and after. There is just something magical about being there, running with all those people. Everyone around you is there for the same reason as you. Simply to run.
I am now more determined than ever to run the Portland Marathon in 2015. I already have my races picked out for next year.
I also wanted to point out that we were told there was 1500 runners and 70% of them were women! Go Ladies! I would also like to thank all those who stayed at the back of the pack with me. It was nice having other runners around while I slowly went the distance.
Just. Keep. Running.
C25K interval information can be found here